Monday, August 28, 2006

Duke lacrosse: A Nifong campaign disaster

Under the headline, “Citizens' group to support Nifong”, we read in today’s Durham Herald Sun:

Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong, who faces a write-in rival on the November ballot as well as an effort to recall him from office, now has a group on his side.

A "Citizens for Mike Nifong Committee" has formed, aimed largely at counterbalancing a torrent of criticism Nifong has weathered over his handling of the controversial Duke University lacrosse case.
You may be wondering, “What campaign disaster? That all sounds like good news for Nifong.”

The “disaster report” comes in the next paragraph :
The new group was organized by Kim Brummell, a corporate security officer and writer, and community activist Victoria Peterson. Their goal is to keep Nifong in office when the November general election rolls around. (bold added)
Here's some background on Peterson.

In late April The Charlotte Observer reported Peterson had said :
an investigator in the [Duke lacrosse]case told her the woman had been sodomized "with an object."

"He did not say a broom, just an object," said Peterson, who has become a friend and adviser to the woman's family since the party. "He told me she wasn't just raped, she was terribly sodomized."
On May 2 the Raleigh N&O reported on a rally sponsored by the hate group, The New Black Panther Party. The N&O’s report included :
"This is a hate crime, and we want a conviction," declared Malik Zulu Shabazz, the national chairman of the New Panthers, a black separatist group based in Atlanta that is disavowed by the original Black Panther Party. "We are mad and fired up. We demand justice, and we will have justice, one way or the other." …

Shabazz was flanked by Durham school board member Jacqueline Wagstaff and perennial political candidate Victoria Peterson.
In July, 2003 when Peterson announced as a Durham City Counsil candidate, the H-S reported among other items:
Peterson [has been an] active supporter of accused murderer Michael Peterson [ He was later convicted. – JinC] and helped organize a vigil for him outside the jail after his arrest in December 2001.

She has regularly attended the ongoing trial and even was questioned in May about talking with a prospective juror in a courthouse hallway. She is not related to Michael Peterson. …

Over the years, Peterson's activism has touched on a wide variety of issues.

She's protested the high numbers of young black men in Durham's jail, lobbied for better conditions in public housing projects, argued for pistol permits to be cheaper, and objected to gay and lesbian films being shown at the Carolina Theatre.

In 1992, after losing her legislative campaign, she asked the U.S. Justice Department to open a criminal investigation into voting-machine problems. The election subsequently was upheld by the state elections board. …

And in 1999, she attempted to file criminal charges against a Chapel Hill doctor who she said illegally tested her for HIV without her consent. A judge later dismissed the charges
In the October, 2003 primary for 3 seats on the City Council Peterson, according to records faxed to me this morning by the Durham County Board of Elections (archive portions of BoE website are temporarily “down”), ran 7th in a field of 13 candidates and received 5.27% of the vote.

Today’s H-S story quotes Nifong:
"They came to me and told me what they had done," Nifong said of Brummell and Peterson. "I was very pleased. It made me feel good."
Folks, There are some things that defy my powers of parody and ridicule.

Today’s H-S story with Nifong announcing he’s “very pleased” Peterson will help head his election campaign is one of them.

She'll prove to be a disaster for him.

What do you think of it all?


Anonymous said...

I think that the Recall Nifong - Vote Cheek campaign just receive another boost. With Nifong AND Victoria Peterson on the other side, how can they miss?

duke09parent said...

It is amusing, but not very meaningful. It is hardly surprising that wack jobs of Ms. Peterson's ilk are supporting Nifong. There is a long time from now to November. I'm glad I'm not a resident of Durham and I will be VERY careful when I'm there. I don't want to be the next poster boy defendant for a Nifong campaign effort.

Anonymous said...

the november vote is really about image. Nifong is in no way a vastly superior attorney to Monk or whomever is selected by Easley if the levers are pulled for Cheek. Nifong's elevation to Da was due to typical Democrat patronage. If he's re-elected it will confirm Durham would rather invoke the Peter Principle than start a fresh with a competent DA.

Anonymous said...

Ok, if you had told me that I'd feel sorry for Mike-the-Nike I'd have called you a fool.

But if he has to sit in the same room with her and plan strategy....


Anonymous said...

Nifong needs to go. Real rape victims like me, now will never report the crime, or any other for that fact. Nifong needed something he could run with and he has. I will be going to Durham to hand in my recall sheet. I can' stand that prick. Hay Nifong Lie down with dogs wake up with fleas.

ME said...


Any “Best of Victoria Petersen” has to include her verbal jousts with Nifong at the Apr 11 NCCU Forum. During the forum Q&A, Ms. Peterson asked Nifong why he had not brought the FBI and the Department of Justice to Durham to investigate the “hate crimes.” Ms. Peterson also said the complainant in the Duke Lax Hoax should never have been taken to Duke University Hospital because of the conflict of interest (this, of course, nearly one month after the fact). Ms. Peterson then went on to proclaim that the medical exam results (including the DNA test results) had been “tampered with.”

This “Best of Petersen” entry available at:

At the left of the page clickon: “Video: NC Central Forum” and advance the counter to 7:45.


JWM said...

To Anon "I think that the Recall Nifong ...."

Yes, it's a boost but I still worry about a split vote: Monks and Cheeks name.

duke09 parent,

“I will be VERY careful when I'm there.."

That has to be a major concern for anyone in Durham. A rogue DA and even one rogue police investigator are terrible for every honest citizen, visitor or permanent resident.

Anon "the November vote is really about image. ..."

I can agree with everything in your comment if you change "image" to "justice."

Anon "Ok, if you had told me I'd ...

Sitting in a strategy session with Peterson. I hadn't thought about that.

God's justice begins!

Anon "Nifong needs to go. ..."

You have that right.

I hope you're not right about actual rape victims failing to report the crimes, although I know many people share your concern.

On language, at the blog I keep to classroom words.


You deserve a better response than I'll give you

No, wait. I'll post your comment on the main page and have my say there.

To all of you who commented: Thank you. I hope you all keep visiting and commenting.


Anonymous said...


Black community shakes up Duke University

Victoria Peterson presented statistics that show over 80 rape cases that have occurred in that part of town, with five of them taking place on the campus of Duke.

"You talk about the Panthers being dangerous, but this university is a danger to the people of Durham," she contended.

"How do you find the two defendants in this case?" Shabazz shouted.
"Guilty," the crowd shouted back.

About 30 local residents participated, including school board member Jackie Wagstaff and activist Victoria Peterson.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Elmostafa the cab driver's trial is tomorrow, Tuesday 8-29.

Anonymous said...

Let's retry the first link in the 10:44 PM post above:

Anonymous said...

"Black community shakes up Duke University

Victoria Peterson presented statistics that show over 80 rape cases ..."

Hmm, wonder what race the rapists were, in general, on campus?

Hmm, wonder if the rapists were Duke students or townies, in general?


ME said...

To Anon at 10:44 and 2:08 above,

A working link to the V. Peterson "80 rape cases" statistics comment is at:

Notice that I have separated the link into 2 sections to prevent the entire link from being cut-off. Just add the 2 sections into one link.


AMac said...

Slightly off topic--Yesterday (8/28/06), a post by Jane Galt at the "Asymmetrical Information" blog linked to a New Yorker article by Peter Boyer (online, but I haven't yet seen it in the printed edtion).

Galt is probably typical of most people in finding Boyer's search-for-deeper-meaning-in-the-team's-misconduct approach to be quite appropriate.

James said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Any educated person will never
step foot in the state of
North Carolina! It is more
unfortunate for the many, many
brilliant in the black community
who are victim to Mike Nifong
using them for his political
gain. The real crime is that
the young men being used to
make a political staement for
Mr. Nifong's gain have
had nothing to do with the cause
of this problem. Futhermore, using
them as scapegoats for the mess
in Durham only makes this problem
tremedously worse. How tremendously
unfortunate for where the world
is today!

Anonymous said...

Although I am not a Nifong fan in any way, it was hilarious in that video when he took Victoria Peterson (who makes herself the easiest target in the world with her delusional claims) to task by saying, "Victoria, what you are saying is exactly what this case does not need right now."

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